Viewpoint: Arizona Legislature’s passes a budget that slashes education, healthcare, state parks, and so much more

[Source: Jim Nintzel, Tucson Weekly, 3-18-2010] — In an effort to avoid raising taxes in the face of a budget deficit of more than $2 billion, Republicans in the Arizona Legislature cut more than a billion dollars in state spending last week.  Allowing only one day for testimony regarding the budget bills in both the House and the Senate appropriation committees, GOP lawmakers eliminated state support for all-day kindergarten, took away health insurance from more than 300,000 Arizonans below the federal poverty level, and eliminated the KidsCare program that provided health-care coverage for children.

State support for people with developmental disabilities and mental illnesses has been cut back, with an estimated 14,600 seriously mentally ill adults and 4,200 children losing their assistance.  The state’s GED and adult-education programs have been eliminated, as have dropout-prevention programs and AIMS intervention tutoring.  [Note: To read the full article, click here.]